Name:Ian Michael Baker-Finch
Born:Oct 24, 1960 in Nambour, Queensland, Aus.
Original/Home Club:Beerwah GC, Queensland
Occupation:Professional golfer; TV commentator; golf course designer.
MAJORS (1): Open Championship (1991). Total professional wins (18), including Australasian Tour (11), Japan Tour (3), European Tour (2) and PGA Tour (2).
Baker-Finch's best known work includes, but is not limited to: Arabian Ranches, UAE (2001, with Nicklaus Design); Woodlands course, Bintan Lagoo, Indonesia (1997); Kennedy Bay, nr Perth, Aus (1998, with Michael Coate & Roger Mackay).
Baker-Finch began his professional career in style. In his first Australasian Tour event, the NZ Open, he recorded his first win. Regular wins on the Australasian Tour, with others in Europe, the US and Japan, culminated in his most memorable win at the 1991 Open Championship at Royal Birkdale.
Rather than his Open Championship victory being a springboard to further success, Baker-Finch's game went into a steady and accelerating decline over the next five years. An excellent game on the practice ground just refused to transfer to the golf course when it was needed. 50 great drives on the range would be followed by a snap-hook on the first tee. After shooting a 92 in the first round of the 1997 Open at Royal Troon, Baker-Finch quit tournament golf.
In place of grinding it out in tournaments, Baker-Finch has become a highly respected television broadcaster in the United States. He has also turned his hand to golf course design (IBF Design).
Played as the Ford Australian PGA Ch'ship. Won by Ian Baker-Finch (Aus). [Concord GC, Sydney, Aus].
Played as the Vines Classic (Jan 23-26; Aus Tr event). Second-placed Frank Nobilo (NZ) and Jeff Maggert (USA) finished 1 shot behind Ian Baker-Finch (Aus). [The Vines Resort & CC, nr Perth, Aus; composite of Lakes & Ellenbrook courses].
The Open Championship (120th) (July 18-21). Second-placed Mike Harwood (Aus) finished 2 shots behind first-time major championship winner Baker-Finch (Aus). [Royal Birkdale GC, Southport, Merseyside].
Played as the Southwestern Bell Colonial (May 18-21). Second-placed David Edwards (USA) finished 4 shots behind 28-year-old Ian Baker-Finch (Aus), who recorded his first PGA Tour win. [Colonial CC, Ft Worth, TX].
Played as the Bridgestone Aso Open (Japan Tr event). Second-placed Tadami Ueno (Jpn) finished 1 shot behind Baker-Finch (Aus). [Aso GC, Aso, Kumamoto].
Played as the Australian Masters. Won by Ian Baker-Finch (Aus).
Played as the Scandinavian Enterprise Open (Aug 1-4). Second-placed Graham Marsh (Aus) finished 2 shots behind Baker-Finch (Aus), who recorded the first of his two European Tour wins. [Ullna GC, Åkersberga, nr Stockholm, Sweden].
Played as the New Zealand Open (Nov 24-27). Second-placed Stuart Reese (NZ) finished 3 shots behind 23-year-old Baker-Finch (Aus), who recorded his first win as a professional. [Royal Auckland & Grange GC, Papatoetoe, Auckland; at the time known as Auckland GC, Middlemore].
Solheim Cup: can Europe defend the most prestigious team trophy in women’s professional golf, when the 17th Solheim Cup is played out at the Inverness Club in Toledo, Ohio (Sept 4-6).
Italian Open: Nicolai Højgaard recorded his first European Tour win (Sept 5), just a week after his twin brother Rasmus landed the European Masters title (Aug 29); the first brothers to win back-to-back on the European Tour.
The San Roque Club: "... how best to revitalise a course that had previously been fit to play regular host to the European Tour’s qualifying school finals..." by Toby Ingleton.
New 27-hole golf complex to be built in southern Belgium
A new golf complex in southern Belgium, close to the border with Luxembourg, will start construction in June 2021.
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